With the new rear bumper came new rear springs. Those lead to new rear shocks. Which led to new problems. Probably the most important issue was the new shocks allowing enough travel to make the rear brake line the limiting factor in travel.
I was originally going to have a new rear brake line made locally but when I did a quick google search to see if anyone had posted an “ideal” length I found that Wheeler’s Off Road had them for a decent price. As an added bonus they also had the OME Trim Packer which would solve my other problem.
The trim packer is basically a small spacer which is designed to be used to level your vehicle once you add that extra thousand pounds or so of gear. In my case Old Man Emu’s offset spring lengths (drivers side is slightly longer to compensate for driver weight) coupled with 80 lbs of spare tire pushed slightly to the right had the right rear corner sitting about a half an inch lower than the left side. The Trim Packer did the trick and leveled things out nicely. The truck actually sits pretty level at this point. We’ll see if this remains the case when we’re fully loaded up for a trip.
As a bit of a bonus round we worked on the giant gap left between the new bumper and the truck body. I originally had planned on building something custom, but when I test fit the factory trim panel the fit wasn’t bad. I mean it wasn’t great either, but it was free and only required a little modification to cover the hole, and keep some of the under truck debris off the tail gate.
To make it fit I finished breaking off the already damaged tabs under neath and smoothed the bottom stiffening ribs until they were flush. I also had to trim a few inches off the panel to make sure the swing out had room to close. The final piece to the puzzle was a couple of spacers to allow the trim panel to bolt to the existing 8mm holes under the tail lights. The spacers are 1.15″ and 1.5″ and were custom made but could probably be done easily with a hardware visit.
In hind site I’m wondering if I could have used a portion of the stock bumper (trimmed to fit of course), and then still be able to have the cover snap in to place. In the mean time we’ll see if there are any issues with this set up.